[CES 2012] I would suppose that the presence of a Star Trek Tricorder in our universe might actually mean doctors could end up less relevant, although specialists and surgeons would still be in demand. Having said that, there is a cool $10 million in prize money up for grabs for the person who successfully develops a device that is similar in function to the sci-fi series Star Trek’s medical “tricorder”. Known as the Qualcomm Tricorder X Prize, the gauntlet has been thrown, where researchers are supposed to build a tool that can capture “key health metrics and diagnosing a set of 15 diseases”. Not only that, it needs to be portable enough without passing the 5 lbs mark.

This prize was launched at CES this year, and this kind of carrot might just see a present-day engineer figure out all the working nuances of the fictional tricorder, and perhaps “make 23rd Century science fiction a 21st Century medical reality”. What do you think of such an offer – is it too generous, or is the prize money not enough? All I know is, I’m rooting for the potential winner whoever that may be, as a tricorder’s use in our world would be indispensable, especially at rural, hard-to-reach places.

Filed in Gadgets >Medical. Read more about CES, CES 2012 and Qualcomm.

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